The new governor of Luxor has quit amid controversy over his links to an Islamist group that carried out a deadly attack on tourists at the Egyptian province in 1997.
Adel el-Khayat’s appointment infuriated many Egyptians and prompted the country’s tourism minister Hesham Zazou to submit his resignation.
El-Khayat is a member of the political wing of Gamaa Islamiya, which carried out the raid at the Hatsheput Temple that killed 62 tourists, including six Britons.
He had denied any role in Gamaa Islamiya’s militant past and pledged to protect tourists.
He told a news conference on Sunday: “We will not accept that one drop of blood be spilt because of a position that I did not personally aspire to at any time.”
El-Khayat was appointed Luxor’s governor by Egypt’s Islamist president Mohammed Morsi.
One of Gamaa Islamiya’s leaders, Safwat Abdel Ghani, told local media the group had “asked the new governor to resign for the sake of Egypt”.
The group – which is blamed for a series of attacks in the 1990s – has since renounced violence.
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